Gary S. Paxton decided to record “Alley Oop” in early 1960. He knew it as a country song originally written and performed by Dallas Frazier (who later wrote “Elvira” — well known to all you Oak Ridge Boys fans) about the popular comic-strip caveman of the same name. Paxton grabbed his roommate, Kim Fowley, to co-produce, hired a few session musicians for the minimal backing, and invited some friends to sing along. The whole group got exceedingly drunk on cider and recorded the song in a single fun-filled evening.
There was only one problem. Paxton was still under contract to Brent Records as one half of Skip And Flip, a duo who had scored two Top 20 hits the previous year. As a result, he couldn’t release “Alley Oop” under his own name — so he invented a fictional band, The Hollywood Argyles (the recording studio was at the intersection of Hollywood Boulevard and Argyle Street). When the single hit #1 a few months later, Paxton suddenly found himself in need of an actual group. He drafted a few guys to become The Hollywood Argyles but no more hits were forthcoming. They managed to milk the fame for a year or so and then moved on to other musical pastures.
Gary Paxton played a role in another huge novelty hit a few years later, while his roommate Fowley went on to become a major player on the second-tier music scene, writing and producing a few one-hit wonders, working with early incarnations of Slade and Soft Machine, and eventually forming and acting as Svengali to The Runaways in the mid-70s.